Duration: how long and how quickly does cannabidiol (CBD) work?

cbd oil vials on an olive-colored background

There is plenty of information about the many positive effects of cannabinoids (CBD) on our health, but how long CBD remains in the human body and how long its effects last after ingestion are still relevant questions. The internet is full of questions like, how long does it take to feel a change after taking CBD? Since people usually hold very high expectations for this, the problem is justified. 

We must underscore that no precise information exists to date. Many individual factors are in play regarding the effect and duration of action on a medical level. Since we have been researching the issue, we will try to give you an answer based on our findings.

When do the effects of CBD start?

The effects of CBD can usually help with a broad variety of complaints, including anxiety. That is why CBD is increasingly used as a supplement to traditional treatment. Each year, more and more people realize the beneficial effects of the cannabis plant. We would now like to explain the impact of CBD and, above all, which factors it depends on in terms of effect strength and duration.

Where does CBD come from?

The cannabis plant is a natural source of CBD, but standard industrial hemp can also serve as such a source. This raw material can be used with no issues. However, only the US-certified cannabis plant is used for products involving medicinal uses. This usually requires the least amount of preparation and results in the purest form of cannabidiol. In hemp plants, the CBD percentage varies from 1.2% to 15%, in the dried state.   

The dosage and intake forms

There are all kinds of ways to apply hemp oil with CBD. A common form is CBD oil, which can be easily found and bought online. One primary advantage of CBD oil is that it can be absorbed via the mucous membrane, hence it can quickly get into your bloodstream. This way of use implies oral intake of a herbal CBD product. In the best case, this is sublingual, which means that the hemp oil is put in the mouth (under the tongue) for up to one minute before it is consumed. The net of blood vessels in your mouth can absorb the cannabinoids into the bloodstream quite fast that way.

After that, the stomach processes the swallowed oil wholly. This method is practical and fast, allowing for equally effective ingestion, in which the bioavailability is also improved. The oil will then be completely absorbed during the next 40-75 minutes. The effect transpires after 15-60 minutes and lasts for about 4-8 hours.

CBD oil is also popular as a food supplement. If the CBD is taken this way, it will take more for the active ingredient to get into the body’s bloodstream. Taking CBD oil in capsules is another reliable form of intake. The effect is noticeable after about 30-90 minutes after the intake and continues for about 6-8 hours. If you combine can bind the capsules with fats (for instance, hemp oil), you will benefit even more as a high bioavailability is given when they are absorbed through the mucous membrane layer of the stomach.

WARNING: Smoking is not recommended. Vaporizing or smoking dried CBD flowers also offers immediate effects but is not recommended as the lungs are exposed to heat, tar, and other by-products. Also, it is difficult to achieve a constant dosage.

CBD creams, lotions, ointments, and cosmetics used for skin show their effects after about 15 minutes. It is usually selected for the external impact on irritated, flaky or oily skin or stimulating anti-aging powers.

Products and dosage

The market is now full to the brim with different products and promises regarding their effects. Sadly, there are often products with sub-par quality on the shelves. So it is crucial to pay attention to the quality and manufacturing process of the products.

The level of cannabidiol content is a critical factor. The accurate dosage must first be researched for each type of problem or complaint by the manufacturer to reach the best effectiveness. It is a very delicate process as the intake form and CBD level are directly connected to the results you will get.

The body

How a body absorbs processed substances can vary greatly. Likewise, with cannabidiol, no exception can be made here. Since each of us has individual features, it should be carefully considered. The occurrence of the effect and the duration of this is therefore always different. You have to take this into account when it comes to dosage. It is therefore not possible to generally determine an exact dosage.

How long does CBD work in the body?

As mentioned above, the duration can vary from person to person, but the average is 2-8 hours. Depending on the mode of intake of the person, the effect can last longer or shorter. Of course, the form in which you take CBD is a determining factor. So it makes a difference whether CBD is smoked or taken in the form of an oil. Applying it to the skin or ingesting it with food also makes a difference.

The quality of the CBD agent and the dosage should not be missing when it comes to the effect. We can assume that by supplying CBD over a more extended period, the CBD remains in the body for a longer period. It is recommended to take CBD products 1-3 times a day, reports the National Library of Medicine.

So it should be emphasized again that everyone has to find the correct dosage for themselves. Anyone who compares themselves to other people and does not feel the same effect can quickly become dissatisfied. Choosing the right product can prevent this. This then requires a little patience to experiment with CBD products and to get involved with the product. It is important to pay close attention to your inner being and to pay close attention to the dosage from which the cannabinoid ceases to be effective. One feels the desired effect after about 30 minutes, and the other only after 1 to 2 hours. For one, the menstrual pain fades away in a flash, and for another, it takes double the dose to get to this level. Again and again, we are surprised how much the results differ depending on the organism. So give yourself time and listen to your body. In conclusion, it can be drawn that an exact or precise indication of the length of effect of CBD can never be made.

In a nutshell, the following factors play an essential role

  • The type of intake and the selected CBD product (dosage form)
  • The dosage
  • The individual consumer/body
  • The pursued health goal
  • Tips for getting to know CBD products step by step

Pay attention to the reaction of your body and follow your intuition.

  • CBD drops under the tongue have a rapid effect, for many, even within a few minutes.
  • Always start with low dosages and give yourself at least three days to feel the reaction.
  • Consultation with healthcare professionals such as a doctor or pharmacist is often very helpful.
  • Slowly approach your optimal dosage and increase it in slow steps.